Alternatives to Google Voice

Google has been consistently expanding for years, and that expansion has taken it into the business world. The company is undoubtedly most well-known for its search engine, and it also has productivity tools available online, a flexible cloud storage solution and its popular email service. But it has also developed its own voice over internet protocol (VoIP) phone service with Google Voice, which provides calling, texting, the option to choose a local phone number, email to voicemail and much more. People can use Google Voice for calling and messaging over both their computers or their smartphones. Best of all, Google Voice is available free of charge. This makes it an excellent option for businesses that need an extra line to help with a high call volume, communicate with clients via text message, or make and receive calls from a local phone number obtained through Google Voice.

Google Voice is a fantastic service, but it's by no means perfect, as some users have experienced reliability issues. For small businesses and startups that need to keep their expenses to a minimum, Google Voice can be ideal for getting a business phone number or setting up a second line. It's not right for every business, though, as there are situations where it won't be the most professional and effective option. Although providers of business VoIP or hosted private branch exchange (PBX) systems can offer business phone service at a far lower price than a traditional phone company, both types of service can still be costly. Plus, these systems don't always come with a local phone number, and it may cost extra to get additional phone numbers.

When it comes to free phone service options, Google Voice is about as good as it gets. But there are some very inexpensive alternatives that allow a business to get a local phone number, send and receive calls and messages, and take advantage of all the other features one could get through Google Voice without breaking the bank.

Grasshopper

Even though Grasshopper has a slightly higher price tag than some of the options on this list, it's well worth it, because it gives businesses a total phone system and all kinds of helpful features. The user can decide if they want to port over a phone number or get a new one, and that new number can be local, toll free or a vanity number. With 800 numbers getting gradually phased out, Grasshopper allows users to get something more modern with an 844-series number.

Grasshopper includes a mobile app with several great features of its own. Like Google Voice, Grasshopper can transcribe voicemails and send them to the user's email. It allows the user to set up their own mobile fax signature and email a fax as a PDF. There's an auto attendant feature and an option to set up custom greetings. Grasshopper also has full location flexibility, as the user can add others from any location and give them local phone number extensions.

A basic plan through Grasshopper is $12 per month and 6 cents per minute. Its Ramp plan, which includes one number with 500 minutes, is $24 per month. For two numbers with 2,000 minutes, there's the Grow plan for $49 per month.

Grasshopper works very well for businesses that need a cloud-based phone system with a wide range of features. It's also a great choice for a business that wants a local phone number and a memorable vanity number.

Telzio

Telzio offers a cloud-based business phone service with plenty of features at a low price. It allows the user to pay as they go, and plan prices start at just $1 per month. That plan includes unlimited call flows, extensions and SIP accounts. The calling rate is $0.119 per minute on inbound calls and $0.168 per minute on outbound calls, although the user has the option of going with a plan instead.

The unlimited extensions are beneficial for businesses with large teams, because everyone can get their own personal extension through Telzio. Or the user could set up extensions by department or location depending on what works best for the business. Telzio can forward calls to a mobile device or an IP phone. It also offers an online control panel, IVR menus, free recording of calls and the ability to set certain call hours. If the user needs a fax number or a toll-free number, those are just $5 per month. Users that want to purchase a package of minutes can get Telzio's Pro plan, which provides 1,000 minutes and has a monthly fee of $29.

If a business is looking for a system that can deliver plenty of extensions, Telzio fits the bill and includes plenty of other great features on top of that. It's also a cost-effective option for a second business phone line because of its low cost. A business can get that second line through Telzio for $1 per month, and then its only additional spending will be for the minutes it uses.

FreedomPop

Those looking for a completely free phone service option with similar features to Google Voice may want to give FreedomPop a try. FreedomPop provides each user with a virtual number that can be from anywhere, and its feature include free calling and texting over a Wi-Fi network and free transcription of voicemail messages. Users can also make international calls free of charge to a list of over 60 countries. FreedomPop's basic plan is the free option, and with that, the user gets 200 minutes, 500 texts and 500 MB of data monthly.

FreedomPop does require Wi-Fi service, which means business owners could need to get a Wi-Fi hotspot to install at their offices. The provider does make it easier for users by selling unlocked phones, and it has some services available with businesses in mind, such as bulk ordering with discount prices, unified billing and online management of the user's account. If the user has their own device to use with FreedomPop, they can simply use that and get more mobile lines for their business without paying a cent.

FreedomPop has other paid plans available in addition to its free basic plan. Pricing depends on availability, and those interested can get a quote by contacting the provider. This service is a smart choice for businesses on a tight budget and those that want to provide mobile devices to its whole team.

Line2

Line2 focuses on letting users establish a local presence through their phone numbers but use their phone system no matter where they are. Since it has quite a few of the same features as Google Voice, such as allowing users to pick their numbers, unlimited texting, what is essentially unlimited calling to the United States and Canada, and accessing the service from any device, Line2 has become a very popular alternative to Google's popular VoIP service.

The user has several phone number options with Line2. They can port their current phone number, select a number with a local area code or get a toll-free phone number. Line2 provides an auto attendant feature, an after-hours setting option, group conference calls, group messages and picture messages. It has a monthly fee of $12.45, but the user pays this annually instead of monthly.

Since it bills annually, Line2 helps business owners who want to keep their number of monthly bills to a minimum. Mobility is a major selling point with Line2, and it will help any business that has many remote members or employees who frequently work away from the office.

Voiceably

Getting an account with Voiceably is a bit more expensive than with many of the other providers on this list, but it also has a strong selection of features. There's the option to get a local number or a toll-free number, and besides calling, there's also SMS messaging. Voiceably offers an unlimited number of extensions, which means a business is covered even if it wants individual extensions for hundreds of employees.

There's the standard number porting, conference calling, voicemail transcription and call recording with this provider. One of its most unique and beneficial features is its developer API. This allows the user to seamlessly integrate Voiceably into production applications or a customer relationship management (CRM) program. Employees can then get caller information before they get on the phone with a client. This developer API gives Voiceably quite a bit of flexibility in how businesses use it, but it makes the service particularly powerful for call centers.

The cheapest Voiceably plan is the Startup plan, which has a monthly fee of $19 and includes one number, 500 minutes and unlimited SMS messaging. The next step up is the Small Business plan costing $49 per month for two phone numbers and 2,000 minutes. Larger businesses can go with the Enterprise plan at $199 per month for three phone numbers and 10,000 minutes.

OnSIP

OnSIP has been around awhile, but it really changed the game in 2016 when it launched a free plan that rivals Google Voice. This free plan includes unlimited extensions, and it allows online voice and video calls up to a maximum of 100 users. It also has a long list of beneficial features, which include web call links, an extension on Google Chrome, slack integration, Zendesk integration, the option to set up business hours and a developer API, to name just a few. With OnSIP, the user can make calls with any SIP phone or app, plus there's unlimited SIP domain hosting and SIP to SIP calls. If 100 users aren't enough, the business owner can opt for a pay-as-they-go plan, which adds the option of external PSTN calls. They will need to buy some extra features to get that, though.

The first 100 users are free with OnSIP, or there's the Unlimited User plan, which costs $24.95 every month per user. That plan has unlimited calling and many other premium features.

Considering its basic plan is free, OnSIP is another excellent option for businesses that are looking to minimize their monthly spending on phone service. Since OnSIP uses web-based calling, it's also a good choice for businesses that want to make calls over desktop and laptop computers instead of phones.

See also

Created by: admin, Last modification: Wed 08 of Nov, 2017 (19:24 UTC)
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